LEHIGHTON, Pa. — Luis Sierra, a bus driver from Ozone Park, New York is now behind bars in Carbon County.
State police say Sierra brutally murdered his girlfriend, 15-year-old Evelyn Colon from New Jersey, and her unborn child in 1976.
For years, the victim was known only as "Beth Doe," and the story of how her body was found dismembered and stuffed into suitcases along the Lehigh River haunted people in Carbon County.
"We remember this story very well. How they discovered the suitcases thrown over the bridge in East Side borough, and we remembered how it touched our hearts. After all these years, they finally figured out who allegedly did this," said Lottie Hager, Summit Hill.
On Wednesday, state police held a news conference at a park in Lehighton, but new information was limited as to not jeopardize the investigation as it continues.
In 2007, the victim's body was removed from a cemetery in Weatherly for DNA testing. Results showed a link to living family members who confirmed their relative Evelyn Colon had gone missing back in the 1970s.
"After numerous interviews with Luis Colon and his sister, it was determined that Jane Doe was their sister Evelyn Colon. We conducted additional interviews, reviewed the evidence in the case, and it eventually led us to Luis Sierra in Ozone Park, New York. He was the last person to have been with Evelyn as they were living together in an apartment in 1976," said Lt. Devon Brutosky, Pennsylvania State Police.
State police say they relied heavily on tips and Pennsylvania Crime Stoppers to solve this case.
Sierra is charged with homicide and is locked up without bail at the Carbon County Prison.
His preliminary hearing is scheduled for April 28.